'The Office' premiere sneak peek: Small-talk tips from Robert California

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Finally, we have some new footage from the season premiere of "The Office."

Yes, it's not much, and it tells us nothing about the identity of the new branch manager in Scranton (kudos, by the way, to the "Office" team for keeping that under wraps all summer). But it's something, and it serves as a pretty good re-introduction to James Spader as Robert California.

Robert is in Scranton, and he stops by the reception desk to ask Erin ( Ellie Kemper) how her day has been so far. Except, well, he also has some notes on her small-talk technique. The message, one which we expect will be repeated in various ways in Thursday's (Sept. 22) premiere, seems to be, Don't waste Robert California's time.

That could be a pretty big adjustment for the Scranton crew, given how the previous boss was all about wasting time.

"The Office" will reveal the new branch manager and give us a much bigger taste of Spader's character when it premieres at 9 p.m. ET Thursday on NBC.
Photo/Video credit: NBC